Jake's. Kohler Food And Wine Brandy Competition Winner!

Jake's StrongGinger won the Kohler Chocolate Brandy Recipe Contest at the 2019 Kohler's Food And Wine Event.  Thanks to a good friend of mine, Lauren Hofland, who encouraged me to enter the contest.

Lauren submitted the Jake's Austrian Steam recipe along with a well-crafted poem in the style of Edgar Allen Poe. She also presented, before a voting audience, a creamy hot cup of the recipe to David Kohler after a riveting performance of the poem.  It was the "Total Experience" that won over the crowd of voters.

Herbert Kohler, couldn't have been more excited to enjoy the recipe named in honor of his Austrian heritage at the Horse and Plow shortly thereafter.  

This is Lauren's poem:




Once upon a midnight dreary, while I pondered, weak and weary,

Over many a quaint and curious bottle purchased at the liquor store—

Perusing my cupboard, decanters uncapping, suddenly there came a


As of someone gently rapping, rapping at my chamber door.

“’Tis some visitor,” I muttered, “tapping at my chamber door—

Only this and nothing more.”

Ah, sad to be so cold and sober in the midst of bleak October;

And each separate dying ember wrought its ghost upon the pantry.

Fervently I prayed for Brandy;—too late in the season for summer


The tapping visitor did implore—

“I have come to offer a libation, a most delightful, chocolate creation —

Nameless here for just a bit more.”

Presently my soul grew bolder; unhesitating— as I was getting colder,

“Sir,” said I, “truly your forgiveness I implore;

But the fact is I sought a warm beverage, and so gently you came rapping

on my door,

And so faintly you came tapping, tapping at my chamber door,

That I scarce was sure I heard you”—and here I opened wide the door;—

Herbert Kohler there and no one more.

Back into the chamber turning, all my soul within me burning,

HVK had obviously just come from the store.

“Surely,” said I, “you have heard my plea;

Let me see what’s in the bag, this mystery

Let my heart be still you Dandy, have you brought to me some Brandy

Have you brought to me some Brandy through my front door?

’An empty glass we all abhor!”

Then this entrepreneur beguiling turned my sadness into smiling,

As the bag he laid on the floor,

“The first surprise that I brought for thee

Is Hot Chocolate from the Craverie,

8 ounces and not a dribble more—

Bring a mug, so that I might pour!”

Quoth Herbert Kohler, but there’s more!”

Startled at the stillness broken by reply so aptly spoken,

Post-haste I opened my cabinet door

Upon my securing a mug, Herb pulled out a jug,

“The answer to your doldrums is this Fixer…Jake’s locally-brewed Ginger


Quickly, quickly be measured a pour, into a shot glass, not a drop on the


The pepper-y liquid slipped into the mug of chocolate galore,

Quoth Herbert Kohler, but there’s more!”

By now the Chairman still beguiling all my fancy into smiling,

Straight I wheeled a cushioned seat in front of Herb, and table and door;

Then, upon the velvet sinking, he betook himself to thinking

Fancy unto fancy, a third ingredient to pour—

“A shot of smooth Kohler Dark Chocolate Brandy is undeniably just dandy

Quoth Herbert Kohler, but there’s more!”

Thus I sat engaged in guessing, but no syllable expressing

To HVK who once again reached into the bag on the floor;

This and more I sat divining, with his head at ease reclining

On the cushion’s velvet lining, on the cushion’s velvet sheen

HVK, eyes agleam, produced a bowl of sweet whipped cream, a cool cloud

atop the pour.

Quoth Herbert Kohler, but there’s more!”

Then, methought, the air grew denser, perfumed from an unseen censer

Swung by Seraphim whose foot-falls tinkled on the tufted floor.

“Mr. Kohler, God hath sent thee with a bar of Kohler Original Chocolate


Oh my spirits then did soar.

Quick as a wink he chopped it, then he topped it, yes, he had added

something more!

With a gleam, perhaps a tinge of flirtation? —he handed me the warm


And offered up a sincere oration:

“It has been my pleasure, indeed it’s been a dream, to mix for you my

Austrian Steam.

“And I wish you a deliciously Happy Halloween!”

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